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Brady announces intentions to leave public office

Date: 2/13/2012

Feb. 13, 2012

By Chris Maza

WILBRAHAM — Board of Selectmen Chair Patrick Brady recently announced his intentions not to run for a third term.

Brady told Reminder Publications that the announcement was a long-time coming, as he made his choice even before he was elected to a second term.

"This was a decision I made three years ago," he said. "I resolved that voluntary term limits are a good thing."

Brady added that while he saw value in continuity of leadership, he felt new ideas and fresh outlooks on important issues was crucial to Wilbraham's continued vitality.

"You've go to mix tradition with change," he said. "Wilbraham is a town with many traditions that have served us well over the years, but in some cases, we are better off to embrace change."

Brady cited the board's ability to change the annual budget cycle from dealing with a deficit to operating with a structural surplus as one of the biggest accomplishments the board had in his two terms. The surplus, he explained, allowed the town to fund pension liabilities while putting away up to $2 million into various stabilization funds.

"Because of that, when the [June 1, July 26 and Oct. 29, 2011] storms hit us, we were prepared," he said. "We spent over $11 million on clean up after those storms. While a lot of that is going to be reimbursed, there are still costs that didn't qualify, but we were able to pay it without raising taxes for any storm related costs."

Brady also lauded the town for the way it pulled through a very dangerous and costly year weather-wise.

"I have to stress that that was not due to one person," he said. "The Board of Selectmen offered some good leadership and allowed [Fire Chief] Francis Nothe to do what he was trained to do. We went through three life-threatening events in the [June 1, 2011] tornado, the [July 26, 2011] microburst and the Oct. 29 [2011] snowstorm without loss of life or any reports of major injuries."

Brady said he plans to distance himself from town politics for a while, but may return to public service at some point, "following in the path of other former selectmen," such as John Lovejoy, chair of the School Building Committee, Terry Nelson, Medical Reserve Corps coordinator, Kevin Moriarty, co-chair of the 250th Anniversary Committee, and David Barry, who has been a part several committees, including the Tornado Victims Relief Fund Committee.

"For the immediate future, I plan to step away. I have been active in the town for a decade," Brady said, noting his service on the School Building Committee, the Capital Planning Committee and the Finance Committee in addition to the Board of Selectmen. "There is a tradition of former selectmen returning to service for the town and like I said, some traditions are a good thing."

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